Home Culture ATTIRE & TRADITION

ATTIRE & TRADITION

Couple in traditional Bohra attire

Dawoodi Bohra attire is a distinctive take on Islamic dress infused with cultural inspiration from their Yemeni and Indian ancestral homes. Both men and women have instantly identifiable clothing that blends Islamic requirements for modesty with the use of modern fabrics and colours. This blending of timeless designs with modern trends in clothing is yet another example of the community's efforts to combine the time-honoured of the old and with the best and beneficial of the new.

Bohra men wear an ensemble consisting of a kurta (a long shirt), draped with a saya (outer robe) and an izaar (pantaloon) or trousers. The word 'saya', incidentally, means 'shade' in the Bohra Lisan-ul D`awat language. Their heads are donned with a stiff, hand crocheted topi which can be white with a gold border or entirely of gold thread.

The kurta-saya is predominantly white and tailored using all kinds of fabrics both plain and patterned. They are sometimes edged with a crochet border which can be white or coloured. Embroidery is also common around the collar and down the central edges of both garments.

If for a wedding, eid or similar special special occasion then the crochet and embroidery can be very elaborate, covering significant areas of both the front and rear of the saya and the kurta and often in gold thread. Even the fabrics themselves might be golden in colour.

Other colours have also started to be used more frequently though mainly for outings, work or travel. In a Bohra majlis (communal gathering) the colour must be white. The izaar is often of either very fine blue or grey stripes and is known as susi. The plain white kurta saya that is used in majlis or special prayer functions might also be starched.

For women the rida has become a trademark Bohra garment the like of which is not found anywhere else in the Muslim world. A dizzying array of colour and patterns is used and embroidery, lace or crochet work is to be found on every piece. The rida fulfils the Islamic requirement for limiting the exposure of the woman's figure whilst remaining pleasing to the eye. Untold are the times that rida wearing ladies will have been asked, in countries across the world, where it is that they come from and what a truly beautiful dress it is that they are wearing.

Indeed a thriving mini industry has grown as women of the community have turned the rida into a fashion icon for the community. Ridas are now made to cater for every need of the Bohra woman. They are designed to be worn at work, for going out, special occasions, religious remembrances or just the ordinary day to day hustle and bustle of the modern Bohra woman.

They range from the workmanlike and simple to the lavishly decorated, embroidered and couture designs. Rida businesses by both men and women; designers, dressmakers, wholesale and retail store owners – both 'brick and mortar' and online – have boomed in the last couple of decades. Women in particular have found a niche market where their enterprise can reap a fine reward with some establishing a lucrative international presence from both ridas and the natural trend for matching accessories essential to a woman's completed outfit.

0FansLike
13,154FollowersFollow
1,903FollowersFollow

Latest news

Bohra Trade Exhibition at Sharjah Expo

A first of its kind trade exhibition in the region showcasing different industries under a single roof has got under way at Expo Centre Sharjah on Thursday.

Bohras in Leicester Celebrate the Festive Season with Neighbours

On 19th December 2018 the Leicester Dawoodi Bohra Community invited local neighbours and friends for a festive dinner to celebrate diversity and friendship within...

Afroz Shah Joins Bohra Students in Surat for Tapti Cleanup

Over a hundred Dawoodi Bohra students of Taiyebiyah Primary School in Surat participated in a rally on December 20th to raise awareness and inspire...

Ladies of London Host Northolt Neighbours for Festive Meet and Greet

Members of London Jamaat opened the doors to the community centre and Masjid to local residents and organisations last Sunday afternoon, 16th December 2018....

Hakimi Trust joins local charities in Sydney Upliftment Drive

Sydney's Hakimi Trust partners with local charities to spread some Christmas cheer.

Minister Masagos Zulkifli Visits Bohra Masjid in Singapore

On the 1st of December 2018 the Minister for Environment & water resources and the Minister-in-charge of Muslim affairs Mr Masagos Zulkifli visited al-Masjid...

Turning the Tide Against Plastic Pollution

The Bohra community joined hands with UN Champion of the Earth, Mr Afroz Shah, in the latest bid to beat plastic in Mumbai. A...

Urs Event in Mumbai Conforms to Zero Waste Standards

Hindustan Times A three-day zero waste management event was held in the city in the weekend to mark the Urs (death anniversary) of Syedna Burhanuddin,...
Turkeys gifted to school

Philadelphia Bohras Gift Turkeys for Thanksgiving

Bohras from Philadelphia gifted turkeys and yams to an elementary school in Delaware for Thanksgiving.

President of Pakistan Lauds Role of Bohra Community in the Country

Radio Pakistan A delegation of Dawoodi Bohra Jamaat headed by Shaikh Kumail Shaikh Yunus called on the President of Pakistan Dr Arif Alvi in Islamabad...

Renowned Artist Wajid Khan Inaugurates Art Exhibition in Udaipur

A three day art fest tilted 'Alwan a Unique Art Exhibition,' organised by Saifee School Udaipur, was inaugurated by the great Indian artist, portraitist,...

Bohra Community In New York Hosts Meet and Greet Event With Indian Dignitaries

The Dawoodi Bohra community in New York and New Jersey hosted a special 'Meet and Greet' event with Indian dignitaries on Tuesday, 30th October,...